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Friday, 7 October 2016

Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!: Day 281 - Richard Hell & the Voidoids

 Blank Generation - Richard Hell & the Voidoids
Produced by Richard Gottehrer & Richard Hell
Released September 1977

1990 CD Reissue with Bonus Tracks

01- Love Comes In Spurts
02- Liars Beware
03- New Pleasure
04- Betrayal Takes Two
05- Down At The Rock And Roll Club*
06- Who Says
01- Blank Generation
02- Walking On The Water
03- The Plan
04- Another World

(1990 Reissue Cover)

Bonus Tracks on 1990 CD Reissue
11- I'm Your Man
12- All The Way

*An Alternate Version appeared on the CD Reissue in 1990. Not totally sure why the Original Version was replaced. You can listen to the Original HERE.

    Richard Hell – vocals, bass guitar
    Robert Quine – guitar, backing vocals
    Ivan Julian – guitar, backing vocals
    Marc Bell – drums

Singles on Blank Generation
U.S. 7" Release
October 1977

UK 12" Release
November 1977
Ork Records

Stiff Records
November 1976 

Blank Generation is the Debut Album from Richard Hell & the Voidoids. The song Blank Generation actually first appeared back in 1974 when Richard Hell was a member of Television and it was a regular in their live sets.

Blank Generation - Television
Live at CBGB's 1974

After departing Television in early 1975 and he joined up with Johnny Thunders and Jerry Nolan who had departed the New York Dolls the same week and in May 1975 played their first show together as The Heartbreakers. Blank Generation would reappear as part of the set as would Love Comes In Spurts and You Gotta Lose. In 1976 the band recorded demos in Yonkers that featured these three Richard Hell songs. It's actually quite funny how Love Comes In Spurts as done by The Heartbreakers sounds uncannily like One Track Mind which was released by them as a single in 1977.

Not long after the demos were made Hell departed The Heartbreakers and formed his own band Richard Hell & the Voidoids. For guitarists Hell found Robert Quine and Ivan Julian - Quine had worked in a bookstore with Hell, and Julian responded to an advertisement in the The Village Voice. They lifted drummer Marc Bell (who would later go on to become Marky Ramone) from Wayne County. Though the Voidoids were not credited as such they did play on the Debut EP that was released by Ork Records in the States and by Stiff Records in the UK (see above).

That EP led to being signed to Sire Records.

The first time I ever heard Blank Generation was when I heard a cassette of the John Peel Punk Rock Special in December 1976. If I remember rightly someone had brought the tape into school a couple of days after it had been broadcast and we sat around and listened in amazement to some of the music he was playing!

I know that Richard Hell would probably be quite offended by me saying this but at times he does sound rather Tom Verlaine like with that whiney vocal inflection! But you could never imagine Verlaine performing this kind of music as Television were a bit more laid back in their style.

The album these days is regarded as one of the classics from the early Punk days and rightly so. It is easily on a par with the Ramones, Television, Talking Heads and Blondie Debuts.

Richard Hell & the Voidoids didn't release a lot of other material following this album. There was another cracking single in November 1978 - The Kid With The Replaceable Head. That single turned up on their only other studio album Destiny Street and that didn't appear until 1982! The reasoning behind was the serious drug problems that Hell had.

Let The Day Begin...Let The Day Start!
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